If you’re planning a wedding, there’s one moment you’ve probably dreamed of since before you even met your partner: your first dance.
Some songs feel like they are written just for newlyweds. Maybe there’s a song out there that feels like it was written just for you and your fiance!
There’s no denying that choosing your first dance song is a big decision! It’s the song that ALL your guests will remember from your big night. But there’s no need to stress or feel pressure around making a “perfect” choice.
We’re here to help you make the right choice for your wedding and choose the song you’ll love and cherish forever! Follow these steps to choose your perfect first dance song (with some of our top picks for 2023 & 2024 weddings!).
Step 1: Sentimentality
The most crucial element of the first dance song is personality. You have to love your first dance song. The song should represent you as a couple and how you feel about one another.
Music and dance are beautiful ways to capture your love story, to show how you’re feeling on your big day without ever saying a word.
Do you have a song together? If you’re high school sweethearts, maybe you remember singing a Coldplay song in the car or dancing together for the first time at prom.
Is there a movie you two watch together and love the soundtrack, or is there a particular scene you want to recreate? The song that was playing at the bar on your first date?
These personal songs are great for your first dance because of their sentimental value and personality. An emotional connection to a song will set you up for success in your first dance, although it’s not required!
If you have a “song,” you think of that romantic night together every time that song comes on. It will be the same way for your first dance! While some couples keep it sentimental, you may want to create a new memory that you’ll only associate with your wedding's first dance.
If no particular songs came to mind, or you want to create that once-in-a-lifetime special moment with a new song, read on!
Step 2: Genre
Maybe you’re one of those couples who just doesn't have a “song.” That’s okay!
Create a list of your favorite songs, maybe songs that make you think of your fiance or have personal meaning in your family or childhood. Have your fiance do the same, and then compare notes.
Are there more upbeat songs or timeless slow-dance songs? Use your lists to narrow down a couple of options and bring these to your wedding choreographer!
Don’t you have the same music taste as your partner? Find a cover or an acoustic version of a song your fiance loves but matches your preferred style!
Pro-Tip: Avoid putting too much pressure on making the “perfect” choice. What’s important is that you both love it. Even if a song has been “overdone,” if it’s a timeless classic that you both love, do it! If you both love Disney and want to do a song from your favorite movie, don’t fear what others will think, do that song from Tangled or The Little Mermaid! The right instructor will support you in fulfilling your vision.
Step 3: Tempo & Style
Once you’ve narrowed down a genre, and even some artists or songs, consider the tempo and style of dance you want to do. Not exactly the romantic types? No problem! You’ll love an uptempo dance style with lots of opportunities for significant movements and goofy moments!
Don’t love being the center of attention? Go for a romantic, intimate song with simple dance moves. You can also opt to clip your song shorter, maybe two minutes instead of four minutes! Be sure to coordinate this fade-out ahead of time with your band or DJ for a smooth transition between songs.
One minor consideration is your wedding dress style. Although this shouldn’t be the primary consideration, let your dance instructor know if you have a ballroom gown, a train, or a form-fitting dress that may restrict movements so they can tailor the choreography. Read all about how we choreograph our first dances HERE!
Still haven’t landed on a song? We’ve got you! Here are some top picks for 2023 & 2024 weddings, with a perfect mix of timeless and trendy!
First Dance Song Suggestions
For the upbeat & goofy couple:
Everywhere - Fleetwood Mac
You’re my Best Friend - Queen
Baby, I’m Yours - The Arctic Monkeys
Don’t Go Breaking My Heart - Elton John & Kiki Dee
Shut Up & Dance with Me - WALK THE MOON
Dancing in the Moonlight - King Harvest
For timeless romance couples:
Dream a Little Dream of Me - Ella Fitzgerald & Louis Armstrong
Can’t Fight This Feeling - REO Speedwagon
At Last - Etta James
Can’t Help Falling in Love - Elvis Presley
It Had to Be You - Harry Connick Jr.
In my Life - The Beatles
For the modern couple:
Best Part - H.E.R. & Daniel Cesar
Can’t Help Falling in Love - Hailee Reinhart
Lover (First Dance Version) - Taylor Swift
All You’rn - Tyler Childers
Lucky - Jason Mraz ft. Colbie Caillat
Moon River - Frank Ocean
Turning Page - Sleeping at Last
We hope you enjoy these favorites! But don’t choose a song because it’s on a list. Choose the song because you love it. Your first dance is for YOU at the end of the day, not for anybody else!
Still not sure or stressing about making that “perfect” choice? Your first dance instructor can help based on your personality and preferences. We promise you won’t be able to stop dancing after a couple of sessions with us!